Return of Undocumented Afghans - Weekly Situation Report (22 - 28 January 2017)

Report
from International Organization for Migration
Published on 28 Jan 2017

Highlights

  • 1,100 undocumented Afghans returned from Pakistan
  • 5,950 undocumented Afghans returned from Iran
  • 5,884 total returns from Pakistan since 1 January 2017
  • 30,823 total returns from Iran since 1 January 2017
  • 82% of returnees from Pakistan (906 individuals) assisted
  • 3% of returnees from Iran (177 individuals) assisted

Returns from Pakistan

From 22-28 January 2017, a total of 1,100 undocumented Afghans spontaneously returned or were deported from Pakistan through Torkham border (Nangarhar province) and Spin Boldak border (Kandahar province), according to the Border Monitoring Team of the Directorate of Refugees and Repatriation (DoRR). This is a 30% decrease in returns from the previous week. Of the total, 1,032 were spontaneous returnees in family groups and 68 were deported individuals. This brings the total number of undocumented Afghan returnees from Pakistan to 5,884 since 1 January 2017.

During the reporting period, IOM assisted 906 (82%) undocumented Afghan returnees from Pakistan, including 97 unaccompanied migrant children, a significant increase from previous weeks. The support provided includes meals and accommodation at IOM’s Transit Centers near the border, household supplies and other Non-Food Items (NFIs) for families, special assistance to Persons with Specific Needs (PSNs), and other assistance from partners as per the adjacent table.

Situation Overview

IOM is responding to a substantial increase in the return of undocumented Afghans from Pakistan and Iran. Since 1 January 2016, over 728,000 undocumented Afghans have returned due to diverse push factors, including deteriorating protection space in Pakistan. Many of those returning have lived outside of Afghanistan for decades, and will need support from the government and humanitarian actors both on arrival and as they seek to reintegrate into a country already struggling with widespread conflict and displacement.

While returns have declined in line with seasonal trends during winter, previous surges in returns have been unpredictable and an estimated 1.1 million undocumented Afghans still remain in Pakistan. IOM is prepared to respond to increased needs and is appealing for additional funding to continue its emergency response programming.

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